New York Mets: Dilson Herrera

Herrera's promotion brought tears, disbelief

February, 24, 2015
Feb 24
PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- Second baseman Dilson Herrera should be ticketed for Triple-A Las Vegas to open the season, where he likely will form a double-play combination with Matt Reynolds. Still, Herrera left more than a favorable impression with the Mets after receiving an Aug. 29 call-up to the majors, which coincided with Daniel Murphy landing on the disabled list with a right-calf strain.

At 20 years, 179 days old, Herrera became the youngest Met to debut since Ruben Tejada and Jenrry Mejia on April 7, 2010.

Herrera went on to hit .220 with three homers and 11 RBIs in 59 at-bats, albeit with 17 strikeouts.

Adam RubinDilson Herrera fields a grounder Tuesday at Mets camp.

He was promoted directly from Double-A Binghamton over Reynolds or another Triple-A candidate in part because Herrera needed to be added to the 40-man roster during the winter anyway. Reynolds, a second-round pick in 2012 out of the University of Arkansas, is in big-league camp this spring training, but as a non-roster invite.

Herrera could be the successor to Murphy, who will earn $8 million this season and then become a free agent. The Mets showed no inclination to extend Murphy and appear content letting him walk next offseason. That is, barring a July 31 trade if the Mets unexpectedly fade from the race.

Herrera actually had already boarded the bus bound for Richmond, Virginia, after the B-Mets completed a homestand last August when Double-A manager Pedro Lopez pulled him off and delivered the news of the two-level promotion.

“He called me to the office and he said, ‘You did a good job here. You’re going to the big leagues tomorrow,’” Herrera recalled. “I said, ‘Wow.’ I was crying.”

Herrera had hit .340 with 10 homers and 48 RBIs in 241 at-bats after a midseason promotion to Double-A, but nonetheless was not expecting the news he received. He had joined the Mets organization along with Vic Black in the Aug. 27, 2013 trade with the Pittsburgh Pirates for Marlon Byrd and John Buck.

“I was surprised. Wow. A big surprise for me,” Herrera said about the promotion.

Lopez said Herrera wasn’t the only one in the room surprised by the call-up straight to the majors.

“Myself too,” Lopez said. “I had just got him a month and a half, or maybe two months prior to that. Just watching him go in tears, it was pretty special.”

Herrera’s first call went to his parents in his native Colombia. He became the first Colombian player for the Mets and 14th in major league history. He also became the first position player in Mets history to begin in Class A and rise all the way to the majors the same season.

“They were surprised, too,” Herrera said about his parents. “They didn’t believe it. My dad was thinking it was early to make the big leagues.”

His parents did not get to watch him in person in the big leagues during the final month of last season, but Herrera hopes they will make it to a major league stadium this year. Neither is employed right now, but they are busy training Herrera’s younger brother Jose, an 11-year-old catcher and third baseman.

Herrera said one of his spring-training goals is to improve his defense -- particularly double-play turns. During his minor-league career, he has played in 267 games at second base, 59 games at third base and 27 games at shortstop.

“I’ve got to be better,” Herrera said about his fielding.

Herrera said the highlight of his time in the majors was his debut against the Philadelphia Phillies, and specifically his first at-bat. That’s the case even though Phillies starter David Buchanan coaxed him to ground into a double play.

Herrera could not recall the name of the opposing pitcher.

“It was exciting,” Herrera said.

Morning Briefing: GM due to speak

February, 20, 2015
Feb 20

FIRST PITCH: With Terry Collins away from camp after his father’s passing and not due back until Saturday, Sandy Alderson will address the media at 11 a.m. Friday.

Among the questions that may be posed to Alderson ahead of Saturday’s first official workout:

1. How will Matt Harvey's spring training and season be regulated? (A team insider told that it has not been determined that Harvey will be held back until the home opener, which is the seventh game of the season.)

2. What about that 89 wins thing?

3. Why was there so little winter activity?

4. How will the Mets handle having six established starting pitchers and what’s the potential for a spring-training trade?

The Mets indicated that all of their pitchers and catchers appear to have made it to camp for Thursday’s reporting date.

Friday’s news reports:

• Baseball America released its top 100 prospect list for MLB. The Mets checking in on the list: Noah Syndergaard at No. 11, Steven Matz at No. 33, Brandon Nimmo at No. 45, Dilson Herrera at No. 46, Kevin Plawecki at No. 63, Michael Conforto at No. 80 and Amed Rosario at No. 98.

• Columnist Ken Davidoff in the Post isn’t concerned about the Mets’ pitching. He is concerned about the fielders behind the pitchers. Writes Davidoff:

On this, we can agree: Everybody worries about the [Wilmer] Flores project. In fact, for a team relying so heavily on its pitching, the Mets deploy potential defensive liabilities all over the diamond. It’s fair to be concerned about Flores, his double-play partner Daniel Murphy at second base, corner outfielders Michael Cuddyer and Curtis Granderson, and catcher Travis d'Arnaud. In other words, everyone besides reigning Gold Glove Award winner Juan Lagares in center field, the previously honored David Wright at third base, and Lucas Duda, who is average at first base. D’Arnaud does score high in pitch framing.

• The Daily News was provided exclusive access to Travis d'Arnaud, who was off limits this week to other media. D’Arnaud told the newspaper about his 2014 demotion: “I was timid at the plate and I let that affect my defense. But when I got down to Triple-A, George Greer, the hitting coach, noticed right away I was standing too far off the plate and, as a result, I couldn’t reach any of the pitches on the outside half. He moved me closer, and everything seemed to come together again. I was myself again.”

Josh Edgin expressed no concern about potentially being the only left-handed reliever on the Opening Day roster. Read more in the Post, Daily News, Record, and Newsday.

Jonathon Niese said he probably should have spent the entire first month of last season on the disabled list, but professed his shoulder feels good now. Read more in the Post, Record,, Newsday and

Wilmer Flores, Kirk Nieuwenhuis and Cesar Puello are among the Mets’ 40-man roster players who are out of options.

Buddy Carlyle reportedly is the only player in camp on a minor-league contract who has an out during spring training if he does not make the major league team.

• WOR officially announced the hiring of Wayne Randazzo as pregame and postgame host and fill-in play-by-play man for Mets games. Listen to Randazzo on WOR on Thursday here.

• Mike Vorkunov at asks five spring-training questions about the Mets and writes a profile about Michael Cuddyer.

From the bloggers … Faith and Fear seeks the midpoint between cynicism and innocence. … John Delcos at Mets Report recalls his favorite spring-training memories from two decades as a beat writer.

BIRTHDAYS: Livan Hernandez turns 40 (or thereabouts). ... Shane Spencer is 43.

TWEET OF THE DAY: YOU’RE UP: Should the Mets hold back Matt Harvey for the home opener since they want to conserve his innings anyway?

Syndergaard again tops prospect list

December, 17, 2014

Elsa/Getty ImagesNoah Syndergaard is rated the Mets' top prospect by Baseball America.
NEW YORK -- Baseball America released its top Mets prospects list on Wednesday, and there's no surprise atop the class. Here's the magazine's full top 10:

1. Noah Syndergaard, rhp
2. Steve Matz, lhp
3. Brandon Nimmo, of
4. Dilson Herrera, 2b/ss
5. Kevin Plawecki, c
6. Amed Rosario, ss
7. Michael Conforto, of
8. Rafael Montero, rhp
9. Marcos Molina, rhp
10. Gavin Cecchini, ss

Alderson weighs in on Mets' top prospects

October, 31, 2014
NEW YORK -- GM Sandy Alderson offered his thoughts on most of the Mets' top upper-level prospects during an interview Friday morning on WIOX 91.3 in the Catskills. Here's what Alderson said:

Steven Matz, left-hander

"He had a very good season in 2013, and exceeded that in 2014, both at St. Lucie and at Binghamton. His numbers were very similar at both places, which is very positive given the fact that he had moved up a level. I would say Steven is probably one of the top handful of left-handed pitching prospects in the game right now. The guy who was supposed to be the best left-handed prospect, Andrew Heaney, came up to the Marlins last year and didn't do particularly well in his transition, but I think Steven is very comparable. He's got an excellent fastball for a lefty, at 93, 94 mph. It can get a little bit higher than that. His breaking ball has gotten much better. And he threw some excellent changeups that night in Binghamton in that championship game.

"He's been on the roster. He was on the roster last year. He'll, of course, be on the roster again this year. I think the difference is that last year we put him on the roster to protect the talent. This year I think he's got a chance potentially sometime during the season to help us at the major league level."

Brandon Nimmo, outfielder

"There are several qualities that I think distinguish Brandon. One is his commitment to excellence, if you will. He's a tremendously competitive individual. He takes his preparation very seriously. He has grown physically very impressively over the last couple of years through offseason workouts. He has an approach that's very consistent with what we try to promote, which is selectivity at the plate. Being aggressive with good judgment, I guess, is how we look at it -- getting a good pitch to hit. If anything, at Binghamton, I think he began to demonstrate a little more power, which we think he has. There may be a little trade-off between his discipline at the plate and his ability to turn on the ball, but I think that's something that's coming. He's a very committed guy."

Dilson Herrera, second baseman

"We're very happy with his progress. I mean, it was phenomenal last year really coming from Port St. Lucie through Binghamton and up to the major league club. It was tough for me to make the decision to bring Dilson up to the major leagues knowing how important he had been to Binghamton. I think I called [B-Mets owner] Mike Urda and said, 'Look, I really apologize, but this is really what we need to do.' And he was the right guy at the time. We had some playing time because [Daniel] Murphy was down.

"Herrera has surprising power for his size. He runs well. He's very athletic. Turns the double play. I think he's going to get more consistent defensively. He's got pretty good hands and moves laterally well. We were impressed with him during his time with us. He had very good at-bats. I think he hit three home runs. So he's got some real potential. And we were very happy with him during the course of his time with us, and he'll come to spring training.

"You know, our middle-infield situation over the next couple of years is probably going to be in a little bit of flux. So he's got an excellent opportunity."

Matt Reynolds, shortstop

"He's been solid at shortstop. And we've left him there and expect that he'll be able to remain there. He's also an excellent athlete. He's got a strong arm, pretty good range defensively. Offensively, he had just a great season last year -- really a breakout season for him both at Binghamton and at Las Vegas. The numbers get a little inflated at Las Vegas, but his were right in line with what he had done in Binghamton.

"I think what he's done -- by his own word, he's indicated -- he's started to use all the field. He's not really trying to pull everything. And although he had some home runs, and I think he's got three home runs already in the Arizona Fall League, he tries to use the whole field. He's sort of a gap-to-gap guy. So we're very high on Reynolds and hope that he can at least at the outset of 2015 duplicate what he was able to do last year."

Kevin Plawecki, catcher

"Plawecki is very solid -- one of the handful of best catching prospects in baseball. I think we're fortunate to have two young guys like [Travis] d'Arnaud and Plawecki. Plawecki is a little different hitter -- more of a contact hitter, more patient at the plate. But I think he has some power potential. He's a big guy.

"Defensively, he catches the ball well, blocks reasonably well. He probably has an average arm, but is very solid behind the plate and I think develops a pretty good rapport with his pitching staff. So we're very high on both of those players. ...

"Right now we're fortunate that we have two who are essentially major league ready -- I think Plawecki is close -- of such high quality. At the same time, as they sort of both converge on the major leagues, it's a question of whether both can be accommodated. I think there are circumstances under which that's possible. For example, sharing the catching duties and then one of them playing first base a little bit or playing in the outfield. Or, during interleague games one of them DHing against left-handed pitching. I think there are ways to do it. The question is really whether that's the best use of those two resources. And it may be, because beyond those two there's a little bit of a drop-off at least in the catching we have in the system. We've got a couple of very young guys that we really like, but there may be a little bit of a drop-off after Plawecki. And so we have to be careful about trying to keep both of those guys in the system."

Michael Conforto, outfielder

"Since I arrived in New York, he's the first first-round pick out of college that we've drafted. Our other three had been high school players. So I do expect that he'll move a little more quickly. We did get him to Savannah for the playoffs late in the season this year. So I would expect that he'll move more quickly than some of our other top draft picks have certainly.

"Michael comes from a very athletic and competitive family. His father, I think, was a linebacker at Penn State. He played football there. His mother is a former Olympic athlete -- a medalist in synchronized swimming. So he comes from a very athletic family. He's a great kid, very humble and committed to the game and has interacted with fans -- I think a terrific individual, and an outstanding hitter.

"A left-handed hitter, power is probably not his foremost quality. He's got some, but he's more of a gap-to-gap guy -- high average, high on-base percentage -- and a pretty good defender, which was not his reputation coming into the draft. But based on the time he spent in Brooklyn and then Savannah, our guys were very pleased with him defensively. He's kind of an all-around player, and we do expect that he'll move very quickly."

Morning Briefing: .500 or bust?

September, 24, 2014

FIRST PITCH: With five games remaining, the Mets still share second place with the freefalling Atlanta Braves. Both teams are 76-81.

So how long has it been since the second-place team in the NL East finished with a sub-.500 record?

Nineteen years ago.

In 1995, the Braves won the division at 90-64, then went on to win the World Series. The Mets and Philadelphia Phillies tied for second in the division in the strike-shortened season at 69-75.

Of course, the Mets are not resigned to their sixth straight losing season just yet. They can avoid such a fate by winning their final five games.

That pursuit begins Wednesday at Nationals Park, when Dillon Gee makes his final 2014 start. Gee (7-8, 3.88 ERA) opposes left-hander Gio Gonzalez (9-10, 3.74) at 7:05 p.m.

Wednesday’s news reports:

• Chief operating officer Jeff Wilpon on Tuesday formally announced an extension for general manager Sandy Alderson that guarantees his contract through 2017. Alderson then announced Terry Collins would return as manager for next season. The Mets hold an option on Collins for 2016, but are not picking it up at this point.

Alderson indicated the coaching staff would be addressed shortly after the season, but confirmed Tim Teufel will remain the third-base coach. Minimal turnover is expected. The exception is hitting coach, which could preclude Wally Backman from getting onto the staff. If the Mets stayed internal for a hitting coach, perhaps a list of candidates would include Las Vegas hitting coach George Greer, Savannah hitting coach Valentino Pascucci, current player Bobby Abreu and roving instructor Jack Voigt.

Read a transcript of Wilpon and Alderson’s remarks here.

Read more on the retention of Alderson and Collins in the Post, Daily News, Times, Journal, Newsday, Star-Ledger, Record, Newsday and at

Jacob deGrom's Rookie of the Year-caliber season is in the books. Finding no upside in deGrom making a final start Saturday against the Houston Astros, the Mets opted to shut down the right-hander. DeGrom logged 178 2/3 innings between the majors and minors, an increase of 31 innings over his 2013 workload. Ex-Met Collin McHugh, who was lined up to face deGrom on Saturday, also has been shut down. Rafael Montero instead starts against Houston.

ESPN’s Mark Simon statistically breaks down just how good deGrom’s season was here.

Read more in the Daily News, Star-Ledger, Record, Newsday and at

Bartolo Colon failed to cover first base at a critical point, then surrendered a tiebreaking three-run homer to Adam LaRoche and the Nationals beat the Mets, 4-2, Tuesday. Washington is 14-3 against the Mets this season. LaRoche is batting .327 (16-for-49) with six homers and 18 RBIs against the Mets in 2014. He also has been walked 15 times.

Read game recaps in the Post, Star-Ledger and at

• Columnist Joel Sherman in the Post examines the size of the gap between the Mets and Nats.

Jenrry Mejia will undergo surgery on Oct. 2 in Philadelphia to repair a sports hernia. Dr. Bill Meyers, who operated on Scott Rice last September, will perform the procedure. Meanwhile, Juan Lagares (elbow) will not require surgery. Lagares, Dilson Herrera (quadriceps) and Vic Black (shoulder) are all done for the season.

• Sophia Rosenbaum and Jonathan Lehman in the Post have fun checking out responses to the Mets asking fans on Twitter to say why they’re a fan of the team, while using the hashtag #ImAMetsFanBecause …

From @MitchNYM: #ImAMetsFanBecause they were all out of Yankees gear

From @FrankDonato1: #imametsfanbecause it’s marginally less painful than smashing your hand with a hammer

From @BorrisQ: #ImAMetsFanBecause my parents didn’t love me as a child

From @AndrewGould4: #ImAMetsFanBecause I don’t feel like I deserve true happiness.

David Wright is bullish on the Mets in 2015. “We’ve gotten ourselves to the point where I think we’re going to be a very good team next year," Wright told reporters pregame, as reported in the Star-Ledger. "We finally have gone through some of these rough years where the expectations we have on ourselves should be pretty high."

• Columnist John Harper in the Daily News constructs one team by combining the Mets and Yankees.

• Lloyd Carroll at NY Sports Day reviews retiring commissioner Bud Selig’s visit to Citi Field.

From the bloggers … Faith and Fear offers a historical guide to the Mets and their second-place finishes.

BIRTHDAYS: Hubie Brooks turns 58. … Bernard Gilkey is 48.

TWEET OF THE DAY: YOU’RE UP: Does second place matter?

Lagares avoids surgery; Dilson, Vic done

September, 23, 2014
WASHINGTON -- Juan Lagares, who has not played since departing last Tuesday's game with right elbow discomfort, is done for the season.

The positive news: Lagares will not need surgery to repair the sprain.

"He's going to go through the rehab process. That's going to take some time to get the muscles in the elbow stronger," Terry Collins said. Like every baseball player, due to all the balls you throw, it's never clean. But it's nothing that they think they need to surgically repair, which is huge for us, because he would miss major time next year."

Collins added that Dilson Herrera (right quadriceps strain) and Vic Black (rotator-cuff strain) also are done for the season.

Morning Briefing: Season's final week

September, 22, 2014

FIRST PITCH: The season is rapidly winding down.

After an off-day Monday, six games remain. Three at D.C. Then three at home against the Houston Astros.

Bartolo Colon, who aims to reach 200 innings this season, opposes right-hander Tanner Roark (14-10, 2.85 ERA) on Tuesday at 7:05 p.m. at Nationals Park. Colon (14-12, 4.02) is at 190 1/3 innings. He also will start the season finale Sunday.

Monday’s news reports:

• In what may have been his final 2014 start, with team brass considering imposing an innings cap, Jacob deGrom limited Atlanta to two runs (one earned) in six innings as the Mets swept the Braves with a 10-2 win Sunday. The Mets are now a half-game behind plummeting Atlanta for second place in the NL East. The Amazin’s swept the Braves in a three-game series at Turner Field for the first time since 2007.

Terry Collins said the Mets will decide over the next couple of days whether deGrom will start again Saturday at Citi Field against the Houston Astros. It’s entirely possible Rafael Montero instead gets a spot start.

“I want to make another one,” deGrom said. “We talked, so we’re going to see. I told them I would like to make the next one.”

The Braves officially were eliminated from postseason contention with Sunday’s loss, and there are rumblings GM Frank Wren and manager Fredi Gonzalez could pay the price.

Read game recaps in the Post, Daily News, Newsday, Star-Ledger, Record, Journal and at

• Mets rookies were required to wear female superhero outfits for the trip from Atlanta to D.C. as part of an annual hazing ritual.

• With Dilson Herrera potentially done for the season with a right quadriceps strain, middle infielder Wilfredo Tovar is due to join the Mets on Tuesday at Nationals Park. It marks the second straight season Tovar initially was snubbed for a September call-up, but received a call because of injury.

• Herrera plans to play winter ball for Licey in the Dominican Republic.

• Tim Brown and Jeff Passan at Yahoo! both believe deGrom deserves NL Rookie of the Year. Passan has Travis d'Arnaud listed third.

• If Wilmer Flores is the No. 1 shortstop, Collins believes Ruben Tejada can be a viable backup middle infielder for the Mets in 2015. Read more in the Post and Record.

BIRTHDAYS: September call-up Wally Backman turns 55. ... Bench coach Bob Geren and Vince Coleman are 53. ... Chris Schwinden is 28. ... Mark Guthrie is 49. ... Minor-league catcher Jeff Glenn is 23.

TWEET OF THE DAY: YOU’RE UP: Should the Mets let Jacob deGrom make one more start this season?

View from Atlanta: Mets rookie hazing

September, 21, 2014

Adam RubinDario Alvarez, Jacob deGrom and Dilson Herrera were among the Mets rookies required to wear themed outfits for the trip from Atlanta to D.C. as part of the annual rookie hazing ritual.

Herrera to play winter ball in Dominican

September, 21, 2014
ATLANTA -- Dilson Herrera is expected to play winter ball for Licey in the Dominican Republic.

Herrera, whose first major league season may have ended Saturday with a right quadriceps strain, told about playing this offseason: "I'm not 100 percent sure, but probably."

Said Terry Collins: "In winter ball, it's not about developing. It's about winning. You go down there, you better be ready to perform, and perform at a big level. And I think it's good for a young player to go down there like Dilson, because it's a great league, especially if you play long enough down there where the stars start to come out in December. You can face some pretty good competition. And I think the better competition you play, the better you're going to become."

Herrera's quadriceps strain is not overly severe, so he will remain with the team and seek treatment and not be sent home, Collins said.

Morning Briefing: Happy deGrom day!

September, 21, 2014

Adam RubinJacob deGrom makes what's expected to be his second-to-last start of the season Sunday.

FIRST PITCH: Jacob deGrom gets another chance to solidify his credentials for the NL Rookie of the Year Award as the Mets bid for a sweep of the Atlanta Braves on Sunday at 1:35 p.m. at Turner Field.

DeGrom tied the modern-day MLB record by striking out the first eight batters he faced against the Miami Marlins in his most recent start. It matched a feat first performed by Jim Deshaies in 1986 with the Houston Astros. DeGrom ultimately struck out a career-high 13 in the game. He enters his 22nd career start with an 8-6 record and 2.68 ERA.

DeGrom recently produced a streak of 28 consecutive innings without allowing an earned run. It was the longest such streak by a rookie in the majors since Matt Cain went 30 2/3 innings without allowing an earned run in 2006, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.

In his last 14 starts, deGrom is 8-2 with a 1.93 ERA.

DeGrom opposes Braves right-hander Ervin Santana (14-9, 3.74 ERA) in the series finale. The Mets have not swept a three-game series at Turner Field since 2007.

Sunday’s news reports:

Jonathon Niese took a scoreless effort into the eighth inning and Dilson Herrera and Curtis Granderson homered as the Mets beat the Braves, 4-2, Saturday at Turner Field. The Mets moved into third place in the NL East, leapfrogging the Miami Marlins. The Amazin’s are only 1 games behind second-place Atlanta.

Read game recaps in the Post, Daily News, Star-Ledger, Record, Newsday and at

• Herrera suffered a strained right quadriceps muscle legging out an infield single in the sixth inning Saturday, potentially ending his season. Read more in the Star-Ledger.

• Broadcaster Howie Rose speaks with Justin Tasch in the Daily News about the first baseball game back in New York after 9/11, which took place on Sept. 21, 2001 -- 13 years ago today. “Forty, maybe fifty-thousand people here, and the wound was so open,” Rose told Tasch. “The bleeding hadn’t stopped. It hadn’t even begun to scab. Who the hell knew what was gonna happen when 40-something-thousand people got together in one place? That was scary. That was intimidating.”

Jeurys Familia, who already has matched a franchise rookie record with 73 relief appearances, will not play winter ball, according to Kristie Ackert in the Daily News.

• The Mets tentatively plan for Rafael Montero to get a start during the final series of the season, against the Houston Astros at Citi Field.

• SNY pregmae/postgame analyst Bobby Ojeda and the Mets have not substantively talked about a new deal to supplant his expiring contract, Bob Raissman writes in the Daily News.

From the bloggers …John Delcos at NY Mets Report wonders if Niese will ever reach the next level.

BIRTHDAYS: Scott Rice turns 33. ... Former Mets reliever Greg Burke, who recently underwent hip surgery after pitching in Triple-A for the Colorado Rockies, is 32. ... Former infielder Joaquin Arias is 30.

TWEET OF THE DAY: YOU’RE UP: Will Daniel Murphy or Dilson Herrera be the Opening Day second baseman for the Mets next season?

Dilson Herrera's season might be over

September, 20, 2014

Adam RubinDilson Herrera suffered a right quadriceps strain that might have ended his season Saturday.
ATLANTA -- If Dilson Herrera's season is over, and it might well be after he suffered a strained right quadriceps Saturday at Turner Field, Terry Collins came away impressed with the 20-year-old infielder’s showing at the major league level.

“I like a lot about Dilson Herrera,” Collins said after Herrera departed in the sixth inning of a 4-2 win against the Atlanta Braves. “Like all the people have told me about him: He’s going to be a very good player. It’s just a matter of getting some games under his belt at 20 years old and getting some experience at the higher levels. But I like him a lot. I like the way he swings the bat. He’s gotten better defensively. And I’ve told [infield coach Tim] Teuf[el], with a little, brief time on Field 3 [in spring training], he’ll be a lot better.”

Herrera said the muscle had not been bugging him before he felt it pull while running full throttle to first base on an infield single in the sixth.

“I don’t think it’s that big of a deal, but I felt something, so that’s what I told the trainers,” Herrera said through an interpreter.

Still, with only seven games left, and given the nature of leg injuries, it is entirely conceivable Herrera is done for the season.

He has hit .220 (13-for-59) with three homers and 11 RBIs since he joined the club from Double-A Binghamton. He went 2-for-3 with a two-run homer Saturday before departing.

“We’ll see how he is in a couple of days, but certainly you’ve got to be very careful with those -- any of those leg injuries,” Collins said. “It’s too bad.”

In Herrera’s absence, and with David Wright already done for the season with a left rotator-cuff injury, Collins intends to leave Daniel Murphy at third base and deploy Wilmer Flores at second base and Ruben Tejada at shortstop -- the least disruption from recent lineups.

One alternative would have been using Murphy back at second base, Flores at third base and Tejada at shortstop. Another option: Murphy at second base, Eric Campbell at third base and Flores at shortstop.

“I’m probably going to leave well enough the way they are,” Collins said. “You’re asking now Wilmer to go to third base, and he hasn’t played third base in who knows how long. And Dan has been going out there, and he’s the one who raised his hand and said, ‘I’ll go to third base.’ Now all of a sudden, you’re jerking him around and putting him back at second. So I’m not going to do that.”

Rapid Reaction: Mets 4, Braves 2

September, 20, 2014
ATLANTA -- Dilson Herrera's first big league season looks like it is ending a week early.

Herrera departed Saturday’s game after beating out an infield single in the sixth inning. He officially was diagnosed with a right quadriceps strain.

Herrera, who limped off the field, earlier had delivered a two-run homer against reliever David Hale in the second inning. That shot, along with a scoreless effort into the eighth inning from Jonathon Niese, helped lift the New York Mets to a 4-2 win against the Atlanta Braves at Turner Field.

If his season is over, the 20-year-old Herrera hit .220 (13-for-59) with three homers and 11 RBIs.

The Mets improved to 75-80, surpassing their win total for each of the past two seasons and leapfrogging the Marlins for third place.

The second-place Braves dropped to 76-78. It marks their first time at two-plus games under .500 in September since finishing the 2008 season at 72-90.

Niese carried a shutout bid into the eighth, when he allowed three straight one-out singles as the Braves loaded the bases. Freddie Freeman then greeted Josh Edgin with a two-run single as Atlanta pulled within 4-2. Carlos Torres replaced Edgin and coaxed a groundout from Justin Upton as the runners advanced. With two in scoring position, Chris Johnson then grounded out to first base.

Toned down: Jenrry Mejia allowed a one-out single but recorded the save. He had a sedate celebration afterward -- merely pointing to the sky.

Ouch 2: Braves starter Mike Minor surrendered a first-inning sacrifice fly to Lucas Duda and departed after the frame with left shoulder discomfort.

What’s next: The Mets complete their season series with the Braves on Sunday at 1:35 p.m. as Jacob deGrom's Rookie of the Year campaign continues. DeGrom (8-6, 2.68 ERA) opposes right-hander Ervin Santana (14-9, 3.74). DeGrom matched a major league record by striking out the first eight batters he faced against the Miami Marlins in his most recent start. The Mets are 9-9 against the Braves this season entering the finale.

TC pledges playing time for Herrera

September, 17, 2014
NEW YORK -- Dilson Herrera is out of the starting lineup for the third time in four days on Wednesday, but Terry Collins said the 20-year-old rookie’s playing time should increase beginning this weekend.

Herrera is 1-for-his-last-21, dropping his major league average to .189 through 16 games.

Collins said the wear and tear of a long season seems to have fatigued Herrera and caused his swing to become less compact.

“I see some things that are pretty much characteristic of maybe not just struggles, but the fact he may be getting run down just a hair,” Collins said. “His swing has gotten a little long. He hit early today because he’s trying to fix it. It’s a fast pace up here. To come out of the minor leagues and where he was, he’s done a nice job.”

Morning Briefing: .500 slipping away

September, 16, 2014

FIRST PITCH: The Mets’ tragic number for postseason elimination is down to five. The Amazin’s trail the Pittsburgh Pirates for the second wild-card spot by eight games with 11 to play.

Even reaching .500 is slipping away. The Mets (72-79) must going 9-2 the rest of the way to avoid a sixth straight losing season. If they again finish below .500, they will match the Houston Astros for MLB’s longest active streak of losing seasons -- six straight.

Bartolo Colon (13-12, 4.14 ERA) tries to get the Mets back on track Tuesday. He opposes Miami Marlins right-hander Nathan Eovaldi (6-11, 4.29) at 7:10 p.m.

Tuesday’s news reports:

Jacob deGrom matched a modern-day major league record by striking out the first eight batters he faced, but Jeurys Familia and Jenrry Mejia could not hold a lead in the eighth and the Mets lost to the Marlins, 6-5, Monday. DeGrom, who had a no-decision, finished with a career-high 13 strikeouts.

Read game recaps in the Post, Daily News, Newsday, Times, Journal, Star-Ledger, Record and at

Matt Harvey's 2014 throwing program is in the books. Harvey put on one final show at Citi Field on Monday afternoon, throwing a simulated game on the main mound. He regularly touched 95 mph despite not quite throwing 100 percent. He used all of his pitches except the slider. Sandy Alderson expects Harvey to be on the same program as other starting pitchers during spring training. Read more in the Post, Star-Ledger and Record.

• Alderson and Terry Collins are due to meet in Atlanta this weekend to discuss Collins’ future as well as plan for 2015. Both are expected to return.

Writes columnist Ken Davidoff in the Post on the topic:

Alderson and Collins have overseen a mostly janitorial period with these Mets (72-79), one during which the Wilpons and Saul Katz have slashed payroll at a record-setting pace. Inaction and inertia have largely defined this time, so much so that it often felt difficult to evaluate these two men given how handcuffed they were by their superiors.

Yet with four years nearly in the books, we finally know Alderson’s and Collins’ strengths and weaknesses. And therefore the Mets should know how both men need to improve for this franchise to make its much-desired leap to bona fide contention.

For Alderson, it’s about filling out the roster and sweeping away the silliness. For Collins, it’s about maximizing that roster and embracing Citi Field.

Read columnist David Lennon’s take in Newsday and more in the Daily News.

• The Mets presented Sterling Awards to Steven Matz as the organization’s top pitcher and Dilson Herrera as the organization’s top position player. They also gave out awards during a pregame ceremony for the top performers at each level of the minors.

Long Island’s Matz spoke with media Monday afternoon about flirting with a no-hitter in Binghamton’s Eastern League championship clincher. Arizona Fall League-bound Matt Reynolds said he understood the September call-up snub. Alderson said Brandon Nimmo is a “lot more man” than a year ago. Kevin Plawecki said batterymate Noah Syndergaard’s numbers did not tell the whole story at Las Vegas. Plawecki also said his vertigo has not resurfaced.

Vic Black was diagnosed with a mild rotator-cuff strain in his right shoulder. He will refrain from throwing for five to six days. While he is not officially shut down for the season, Black may not appear again in 2014. Read more in the Post and Newsday.

Jeremy Hefner “likely” is headed for a second Tommy John surgery after an unfavorable visit to Dr. James Andrews.

• Jared Diamond in the Journal prints the opening two rounds of the Mets’ fantasy-football draft. The Dillon Gee/bullpen catcher Dave Racaniello team took Philadelphia’s LeSean McCoy first overall. Kansas City’s Jamaal Charles went second overall to Harvey and strength coach Jim Malone.

• Harvey was named among New York's most stylish by Us Weekly.

From the bloggers … Faith and Fear reflects on witnessing pitching history.

BIRTHDAYS: Orel Hershiser turns 56. ... Desi Relaford is 41. ... Chris (Animal) Carter is 32.

TWEET OF THE DAY: YOU’RE UP: Does reaching .500 matter for the Mets?

Morning Briefing: deGrom Day!

September, 15, 2014

Mike Ehrmann/Getty ImagesJacob deGrom continues his NL Rookie if the Year campaign on Monday night.

FIRST PITCH: Time to reel in the Miami Marlins!

Jacob deGrom's Rookie of the Year campaign continues Monday as the Mets open a three-game series against the Giancarlo Stanton-less Marlins at Citi Field. Stanton, an MVP candidate, suffered facial fractures when he was struck with an 88 mph pitch from Milwaukee’s Mike Fiers on Thursday.

The Marlins (72-76) are a game ahead of the Mets (72-78) for third place in the NL East. For the record, the Mets are 7 games behind the Pittsburgh Pirates for the second wild-card spot with 12 games remaining.

DeGrom (8-6, 2.62 ERA) opposes right-hander Jarred Cosart (13-9, 3.70), who was acquired on July 31 in a deal that sent outfielder Jake Marisnick to the Houston Astros.

Since allowing six runs and 12 hits in 4 1/3 innings at St. Louis on June 16 to drop to 0-4, deGrom has posted a 1.77 ERA, .210 opponent batting average and 0.996 WHIP in 13 starts.

Pregame, the Mets will honor their Sterling Award winners, including Stony Brook, Long Island, native Steven Matz as pitcher of the year and Dilson Herrera as position player of the year. Matz took a no-hit bid into the eighth inning Friday in Double-A Binghamton’s Eastern League championship clincher against Richmond.

Adam RubinLong Islander Steven Matz will be honored as the organization's pitcher of the year before Monday's game.

Matz, 23, went a combined 10-9 with a 2.24 ERA and had 131 strikeouts and 35 walks between Class A St. Lucie and the B-Mets during the regular season.

Also due to be honored Monday as top performers at their respective minor-league levels:

Las Vegas -- Matt Reynolds, ss

Binghamton -- Kevin Plawecki, c

St. Lucie -- Brandon Nimmo, of

Savannah -- Dario Alvarez, lhp and Akeel Morris, rhp

Kingsport -- Vicente Lupo, of

Brooklyn -- Marcos Molina, rhp

Gulf Coast League -- John Mora, of

Dominican Summer League 1 -- Ali Sanchez, c

Dominican Summer League 2 -- Walter Rasquin, c

Monday’s news reports:

Wilson Ramos delivered a two-run homer against Jonathon Niese to break a scoreless tie in the seventh and the Nationals beat the Mets, 3-0, Sunday. The Mets officially were eliminated from the NL East race.

The Nats have won 14 of their last 15 games at Citi Field and have out-homered the Mets 35-7 in Queens during that span.

Washington has homered in 15 straight games at Citi Field, the longest streak ever by a team at the ballpark, including the Mets. The Atlanta Braves rank second, having homered in 11 straight games at the Queens stadium from April 2012 through May 2013. The Mets’ longest streak is nine straight games with a Citi Field homer, which came June 15-July 9 of this season.

The Mets went 1-for-10 with runners in scoring position Sunday and hit .176 (6-for-34) in those situations during the four-game series.

Read game recaps in the Post, Daily News, Newsday, Journal, Record and at

Adam RubinVic Black is headed for an MRI of his right shoulder on Monday.

Vic Black will have an MRI on Monday, two days after his velocity again sagged in a relief appearance and he experienced shoulder weakness. Black was examined Sunday by a doctor at the stadium. He indicated afterward that the belief is the shoulder is just fatigued.

Left-handed reliever Dana Eveland is being sent home to California because he has inflammation in his pitching elbow and will not pitch against this season.

Matt den Dekker had a pinch-hit infield single Sunday in his first plate appearance since being hit on the top of the left hand with a pitch last Tuesday.

Read more on Black in the Post and Record.

• Critic Phil Mushnick in the Post is not a fan of Jenrry Mejia's “fisherman” save celebration against the Nats. Writes Mushnick:

Terry Collins is trying to convince Jenrry Mejia that his exaggerated, self-absorbed, attention-starved, post-save fool-dancing -- even after nearly blowing a save -- is unprofessional. Let me give it a shot: Jenrry, you look like a fool.

• Joe Lemire in the Journal notes that Zack Wheeler, deGrom and Noah Syndergaard are part of a select group of lefty-hitting right-handed pitchers. That exposes their right arms while standing in the batter’s box. Wheeler and deGrom actually are natural righty hitters.

• Lynn Worthy in the Binghamton Press & Sun-Bulletin recaps the B-Mets’ title.

BIRTHDAYS: Former reliever Satoru Komiyama turns 49.

TWEET OF THE DAY: YOU’RE UP: Should the Mets activate Steven Matz, Matt Reynolds and Kevin Plawecki while they are in town for the Sterling Award presentation?



Daniel Murphy
.289 9 57 79
HRL. Duda 30
RBIL. Duda 92
RD. Murphy 79
OPSL. Duda .830
WB. Colon 15
ERAJ. Niese 3.40
SOZ. Wheeler 187